Published on January 8th, 2018 | by Chuck161
Chase Account Freeze due to Financial Review
[Update 4/20/18: added a fifth cause.] [Update 1/8/18: We’re hearing more and more people getting shut down recently. I also added a fourth cause of shutdown being large spikes in spend on existing cards. Lots of people are not having success getting reinstated. Reposting this as a warning.]
This is a guest post from my buddy Allen. He has some experience with getting Chase accounts frozen and released multiple times. I also added a few notes of my own and Final Thoughts at the end.
Remember Chuck’s recent post on Chase Cancelling All Accounts of Recent Card Applicants who they Deem Risky? Actually I believe the process they went through are Chase Financial Review (FR). We’re used to hearing about Amex FR, but apparently Chase recently introduced their own review process too.
Introducing CHASE Financial Review
My FR Story
I was newly approved for the Amazon Prime Rewards Visa Signature card in March and British Airways Credit card in April. In mid-May my cards were declined. When I contacted Chase on the number on the back of the credit cards, after some verification questions the representative stated she could not access my account due to “periodic review”. The representative stated it is not a fraud concern, but a periodic review of credit report and a specific team handles it.
After several more calls on both accounts and reaching out to the “periodic review” team, I was able to gather the following info.
What is Chase FR?
Sometimes an account goes through “periodic review”. You will not be able to use the account in question while it is under review. Think of the process Chase’s version of FR.
It’s important to realize that this is an individual credit card freeze. Unlike Amex, Chase doesn’t freeze your entire card portfolio. I can still use all my other Chase cards as normal except the ones under review.
You know you are under Chase FR when your card gets declined. When you contact front-level reps, they can’t access the account, or will tell you to wait maximum of 10 business days, or that someone will call you.
My significant-other also went through the same review process a few months ago on her Ink Business card. The new Ink Business card was declined and frozen for several days.
What Causes It?
The common indicators seem to be:
- Brand new Chase accounts (regardless of how long you’ve been with Chase)
- Lots of recent hard pulls
- Suspicious usage of the new account such as large transactions or gift card purchases
- Sudden large spike in spending (in the tens of thousands of dollars)
- Perhaps high credit limits (with Chase, or maybe even with all banks?) (source)
There are three possible outcomes of the FR:
- Shutdown: This is what got a bunch of people shutdown recently for people that had fairly short history with Chase. Note that this decision is potentially reversible. See Chase Cancelling All Accounts of Recent Card Applicants who they Deem Risky
- Clearance: After two weeks under review I was again able to use my accounts normally.
- Partial result: This isn’t common, but we’ve seen a report of slashed credit lines and reports of shut down which did not affect all business cards.
How to Deal with Chase FR
There isn’t really anything to do on your end during the review. In fact, if you happen not to use your credit card for a couple of weeks, you may never notice that you were ever reviewed. You can call the department directly at 1-800-290-1316, but they can’t help you until the review is actually finished.
The only indication of the FR in my case was that Chase hard-pulled me (Experian). They never told me they’d do it, I just found a pull on my credit report. My SO didn’t get any hard pull during her FR. [I suspect the hard pull does not come in most cases since they take information off the credit report that they’ve just recently pulled.]
If you do get shut down, you’ll get a letter from Chase indicating such. Before that, you won’t get any sort of communication.
- Do not go crazy with spending on new Chase accounts. My suggestion would be to wait at least wait until the initial 90 days has passed before MSing.
- Avoid obviously red flags such as gift card purchases if you can.
- The longer history you have with Chase, the better.
My FR Timeline
- March 31 – approved for the Amazon card
- April 27 – approved for BA card
- May 12 – BA card got frozen (after giftcards.com purchase)
- May 14 – Amazon card got frozen (after large Amazon gc transaction)
- May 18 – Chase pulled my credit report
- May 30 – both accounts were unfrozen on same day
While many people have gotten shut down by Chase, it’s interesting to know that there’s actually an FR process during which time the accounts are frozen and reviewed.
The review process seems somewhat similar to the Amex FR process, except that Amex freezes all accounts and asks for your tax returns while Chase freezes specific accounts and might even hard pull. Also, Amex doesn’t usually shut you down while Chase does.
Importantly, the process seems to always start with one or more cards being frozen for review, eventually often resulting in all Chase cards being shut down.
As noted, many people are able to get their accounts reinstated upon request or official complaint. I wonder if some these cases never really got them reinstated, rather were naturally reopened after the review.
Please let us know if you’ve experienced a Chase FR as well.